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Live from OPACY

At RFK, they have racing presidents. On the scoreboard at Oriole Park at Camden Yards, they have condiment races. Ketchup your big winner tonight.

Battle of home runs here in the top of the third. Ryan Church's was worth one (and would have been shy of the warning track at RFK?) and Melvin Mora's was worth three, so 3-1 O's.

Some bits and pieces of news.

Manny Acta flip-flopped Felipe Lopez and Cristian ".346" Guzman in the lineup, hitting Guzman leadoff. Acta said this was more about getting Lopez out of his 2-for-37 slump (which became 2-for-38 in the first inning on a fly to left).

"I just want to give 'Lopey' a chance to hit with Guzman on and open the hole for him, and maybe create something. We need to get him going."

Does Guzman like hitting first? "Not really," he said. But oh well. He is a .279 hitter from the top spot in his career (151 games before tonight) as opposed to .263 overall. Career OBP from the top spot is .313, which isn't good enough. But he's hot now, so Acta's trying to take advantage of it.

Daniel Cabrera just walked Lopez, so there's that. Lopez is a career .258 hitter leading off (196 games), a career .262 guy in the 2 hole. OBP is better hitting second (.346/.315).

John Patterson: Bullpen went well. Located his fastball better, he said. "That was the biggest thing that came out of it," he said.

(Remember how I said Lopez walked? Zimmerman just hit a two-run bomb with two outs to tie the game at 3-3.)

Patterson is still slated to make a rehab start Friday at Class A Potomac. But I sense he'll make at least three, and maybe four, of those before he returns. GM Jim Bowden said the pitchers could need as few as two and as many as -- gulp -- six rehab starts (though he was being facetious with the last one). I would say Bergmann could need maybe two (a guess) and Patterson will need more.

Patterson said he struggled with his slider, a pitch he didn't throw in a simulated game Sunday at Potomac.

Other news: Shawn Hill isn't allowed to throw right now. "Up until his left shoulder is healthy, he's not going to throw," Acta said. "That's it. It's as simple as that."

Hill said he hoped that would be Thursday or Friday. He said his elbow feels great, but the feeling all along has been the problems with his left shoulder -- which he briefly separated while diving back into third base in Florida in April -- caused some problems with his elbow. It's a shame, really. Remember his last appearance? Five no-hit innings against the Marlins.

With that, the Journal closes its doors for the evening. Must get to pecking away for the $.35 edition. Enjoy the rest of this one.

Oh, and keep in mind I have a chat Wednesday at 1 p.m. I'll talk to you then.

By Barry Svrluga  |  June 12, 2007; 7:46 PM ET
 
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